Monday, December 31, 2018

Middle Grade Monday and Audiobook Review: Lu by Jason Reynolds

Lu by Jason Reynolds. Unabridged  e-audiobook. Read by Guy Lockard. Simon & Schuster Audio, 2018. 9781508246176. Review of e-audiobook borrowed from public library. Own hard cover copy.)

Reynolds' Track series comes to a close with Lu, the last of the newbies of Coach's elite track team. Lu is co-captain of the Defenders but seems to be losing a bit of his swagger and gold chains and diamond earrings aren't helping. He's struggling with his event, hurdling, irked that the team co-captain doesn't respect him, and wonders about Ghost's involvement with a boy who bullied Lu relentlessly. On top of that, his parents share the news that a new baby is coming. It's hard to stay focused on leading the Defenders to victory in the championships with all that going on. Reynolds packs a lot of heart into each of these short, readable books. While I didn't want the series to end, the conclusion was satisfying.

Guy Lockard cemented his place as a fave narrator of mine with his performance of Ghost. Patina was performed beautifully by Heather Alicia Simms. I was mildly surprised to find that Lockard was the narrator of Sunny, as each book is written in the first person. The rhythm of Sunny was different and it worked. Besides, it's worth it to hear Lockard's voice for coach. While it still worked here in Lu, I can't help thinking that three different narrators might have been a better choice. Lockard's voices for each narrator didn't seem all that distinct. It's a small quibble, really. The series is enormously popular at my school. Read with your eyes. Read with your ears. Don't miss this quartet of heart. 

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